Last night, Microsoft unveiled Update Rollup 1 for Microsoft
Windows XP, an integrated set of the critical security fixes and other
software updates that the company has released since XP Service Pack 1
(SP1). Microsoft also released the first set of security fixes--to be
released each month--for various Windows versions.
The rollup is a result of Microsoft's recent decision to switch to
more predictable product updates. Update Rollup 1 for XP is a
response, of sorts, to customer complaints that arose after Microsoft
quietly noted (on a Web page) XP SP2's delay from late 2003 to early
2004; customers had asked the company for an easier to way to install
the cavalcade of security patches that Microsoft had released since
last year's XP SP1 release.
"Microsoft has released Update Rollup 1 for Microsoft Windows XP,"
the company noted in a security posting this week. "An update rollup
is a cumulative set of hotfixes, security patches, critical updates,
and updates that are packaged together for easy deployment." The
package includes 22 previously released fixes; installing one update
rollup has the same result as installing the individual updates.
Update Rollup 1 for XP is available from Windows Update and by
direct download from the Microsoft Web site. Two download packages are
available: a full installer that weighs in at 9.2MB and an express
installation version that dribbles in only the fixes that your
particular system needs, saving bandwidth and time. More information
and the free downloads are available from the Microsoft Web site (see
the first URL below).
Microsoft also released its first planned set of security fixes
yesterday. The set consists of five critical security fixes--four for
Windows and one for Microsoft Exchange Server--and two noncritical
fixes. For more information and the patch downloads, visit Microsoft's
Security Web site (see the second URL below).
In related news, on Tuesday, a Microsoft executive reportedly told
Citrix iForum 2003 attendees that the company is fast-tracking XP SP2
for a December release, months earlier than the company had previously
promised. According to my sources, however, that news is incorrect.
I'll try to get a definitive answer to this question today.